Lung cancer is the most fatal and deadly type of cancer. It contributes to one in every five deaths globally. Recent statistics reveal that there are 1.59 million deaths from lung cancer per year worldwide.
The only good thing about lung cancer is the fact you can lower your risk. In this article, you will learn measures that can help reduce the risk of this lethal illness.
1. Quit smoking
Cigarette smoking is the leading cause of lung cancer. It contributes to more than 90 percent of all lung cancer cases. Tobacco smoke contains more than 70 known cancer-causing agents such as ethylene oxide and benzene. These chemicals trigger changes in the lung tissue that eventually develops into tumors.
Quitting smoking is not just good for you. You can reduce the risk of your family developing lung cancer by quitting smoking today. Passive smoking increases the risk of developing lung cancer by up to 30 percent. If you don’t smoke, you can reduce your risk of this lethal illness by avoiding secondhand smoke.
Quitting smoking is not an easy task. The withdrawal symptoms are adverse, but your doctor can help you out. If you are planning to quit smoking, your doctor will be happy to help you.
2. Avoid exposure to RADON
Radon is a naturally occurring radioactive gas that can accumulate in homes. Exposure to this gas is the leading environmental cause of lung cancer in nonsmokers. Recent statistics reveal that radon exposure contributes to an estimated 21,000 deaths every year.
According to CDC, you can reduce Radon exposure by quitting smoking and discouraging smoking in your home. You can also protect your family from radon exposure by:
- Increasing airflow into your house
- Using plaster and caulk to seal cracks on the floor and walls
- Adopting radon-resistant construction techniques
3. Exposure to Asbestos
Asbestos is a natural mineral that can cause cancer. When it gets into the body, it gets trapped in the inner lining of the lungs and cause asbestos-related lung cancers. Exposure to this mineral for one year increases the risk of lung cancer by four percent. EPA has already banned asbestos mining and processing in the US, but it is still present in some products. You can avoid asbestos exposure by avoiding papers, fake fireplaces embers, flooring felt, and other products that contain it. According to pulmonologists, reducing exposure to carcinogens at work and public places can help reduce the risk of lung carcinoma.
4. Limit alcohol
Excessive alcohol consumption is linked with an increased risk of lung cancer. A high alcohol concentration in the blood cause progression of pre-existing tumors. Heavy drinking accounts for 3.5 percent of all lung cancer cases. Having more than three drinks per day can increase your risk of this illness by up to 30 percent. To reduce your risk, you should not consume more than one glass if you are a woman and more than two drinks if you are a man.
5. Exercise regularly
People who exercise regularly are 23 percent less likely to develop lung tumors later in life. Exercises that involve the respiratory muscles can lower the incidences of lung cancer in both men and women. Aerobic exercises like jogging, running, jumping, and yoga can immensely improve your overall heart health.
6. Eat healthily
You are what you eat. Eating healthy foods helps boost your immune system and reduce the risk of diseases while eating junk foods increases your risk of obesity, diabetes, high blood pressure, heart diseases, stroke, and some types of cancer. Foods rich in antioxidants reduce the risk of inflammation. Vegetables that are rich in carotenoids and vitamin C can help protect your body against tumors. According to a study in JAMA Oncology, adding yogurt and fiber-rich foods to your diet can help reduce your lung cancer risk.
7. Avoid exposure to outdoor air pollution
The outdoor air can be contaminated with hazardous carcinogens and respiratory irritants. Inhaling polluted outdoor air over long periods can damage the DNA structures of the cells lining the respiratory tract and lead to mutations. These mutations can trigger the development of a cancerous tumor. Nose masks and nasal filters can help filter the air you inhale and reduce exposure to carcinogens in the air.
8. Avoid excessive supplements
People are now turning to taking vitamin supplements instead of adopting a healthy diet. What many don’t know is that vitamin supplements are not as effective as dietary vitamins. When you are taking supplements, there are higher chances of overdosing. Too much of something is poisonous. An overdose of vitamin B-complex can increase the risk of cancers of the lung and larynx. Taking supplements without your doctor’s prescription raises your cancer risk by four percent.
To sum up, it is important to prioritize respiratory health and take improved preventive measures against lung cancer today. Taking actions today will help you experience thriving and healthy lungs for longer.